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BlackBerry thinks 100M BBM downloads are impressive

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Downloads and active users are not the same thing

BlackBerry announced that BBM has been downloaded more than 100 million times on Android, a year and a half after the messaging app first launched on Google's OS. The company also notes that "100 million is great, but a billion is even better," adding that BBM stickers (which are similar to any other messaging app's stickers — think big, cartoonish emojis) have been sent more than a billion times by users. "All these numbers just go to show the tremendous momentum behind BBM right now," claims BlackBerry.

downloads aren't the same as actual users

Well, yes and no. It certainly shows people have downloaded BBM, but downloads are far from the same as active users. The former include all the people who may have just been curious about an app while the latter are the individuals who actually contribute to an app's value.

Samsung's ChatON messaging app, for example, can boast at least 100 million Android downloads but it also happens to be shutting down this year. Meanwhile, WhatsApp has 700 million monthly active users who exchange 30 billion messages every day — that's 50 percent bigger than the global market for SMS messages. Mindless stat-polishing just isn't the same as actually having a successful app.